100 Best Restaurants 2011: 2941
Comments () | Published January 18, 2011
100 Best Restaurants (2011) 100 Best Restaurants (2010)

2941
Address: 2941 Fairview Park Drive, Falls Church, VA 22042
Phone: 703-270-1500
Neighborhood: Falls Church
Cuisines: Modern, French, American
Opening Hours: Open Monday through Friday 11:30 to 2 and 5 to 9:30, Saturday 5 to 10 PM. Closed Sunday.
Nearby Metro Stops: Dunn Loring-Merrifield
Price Range: Very expensive
Dress: Business Attire
Noise Level: Intimate
Reservations: Recommended
Best Dishes Seared foie gras with huckleberries; burrata-filled ravioli in Robiola cheese; clam chowder; madai snapper with ginger beurre blanc; duck with polenta, acorn squash, and grapes; any Wagyu-beef preparation; chocolate mousse with Baileys Irish Cream; s’more
Price Details: Starters, $12 to $22; main courses, $29 to $48.

Only the top 40 restaurants were ranked in 2011's Best Restaurants list.

Amid the explosion of small-plates cafes, ethnic enclaves, and midlevel destination restaurants where the cooking is as serious as the setting isn’t, this high-toned oasis, opened in 2002, begins to seem old-fashioned. Everything about it—dark-suited waiters, a 5,000-bottle wine list, house-made baguettes to bid you goodbye—says statement dining.

The cathedral-like space stands as a monument to the dot-com era. The food is suitably grand—luxury ingredients subjected to classical French and creative modern preparations and dramatically (if stintingly) presented on gorgeous china. The chef, Bertrand Chemel, apprenticed under Daniel Boulud at his venerated New York flagship, and the influence is most obvious in Chemel’s saucing, which can elevate a simple cut of beef or an underseasoned breast of duck or lend a rustic depth to the pristinely fresh clams, mussels, and lobster that make up his interpretation of zarzuela, a Spanish seafood stew.

This rich, layered cooking calls for wine—perhaps a well-aged bottle of Burgundy or Bordeaux, which you can count on to be decanted and served at the proper temperature. We’d expect nothing less of a bastion of the old guard.

Also good: Hamachi crudo with Meyer lemon and cucumber; seared foie gras with duck confit and brioche; duck trio of sausage, leg, and roasted breast; beef two ways with potato purée; chocolate chiboust with a cream-filled pastry; mont blanc, a thin cake of puréed chesnuts and cream, with Calvados ice cream.

Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday for dinner. Very expensive.

>> See all of 2011's Best Restaurants

 

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Posted at 12:00 AM/ET, 01/18/2011 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews